The Old Mole

The Old Mole is an English Country Dance. It was published by John Playford (website) in 1651 in The English Dancing Master. It was interpreted by Cecil Sharp (website) in 1912 and published in The Country Dance Book (Part 3). Found in The Playford Ball. It is a proper 3 Couple Longways dance. There is no progression in this dance. The dance lasts 176 bars. It is in the key: D Major.

Playford writes:

Lead up a D. forwards and back, set and turn S. That again All a D. to the left hand, back again, set and turn S. ·: As much to the right First man and last Wo. meet a D. back again, meet again and change places ·: : First Wo. and last man as much ·: ·: The second man as much with his own ·: ·: ·
The two first We. hands, and the two last men hands, lead forwards and back to the odd one against them, the the odd ones go under your arms Do this change four times over to the place where you began it Then first and last change as before to your places
All the men hands, and all the We. hands, meet all forwards and back the first and last, last on each side turn each other, the 2. turning his own Sides where you turned, and turn your own Men the S. Hay ·: We. as much The D. Hey twice over ·: : Cast off and come to your places. That again.

The animation plays at 120 counts per minute. Men are drawn as rectangles, women as ellipses. Each couple is drawn in its own color.

I.A11-4Up a Double, and back
5-8Partners set and turn single
I.A21-4Up a Double, and back (again)
5-8Partners set and turn single
I.A31-4All face men's wall, forward a double and fall back
5-8Face partner, set and turn single
I.A41-4All face women's wall, forward a double and fall back
5-8Face partner, set and turn single
II.A11-4Long 1st corners forward to meet and fall back
5-8These same change places
II.A21-4Long 2nd corners forward to meet and fall back
5-8These same change places
II.A31-42s forward to meet and fall back
5-8These same change places
III.A11-4W3+W2 join hands forward a double to M3 and fall back while M2+M1 do the same to W1
5-8These same make arches, all crossing to own side
III.A21-4M3+M2 join hands forward a double to W3 and fall back while W2+W1 do the same to M1
5-8These same make arches, all crossing to opposite side
III.A341-16That again, twice more
IV.A11-4Long 1st corners forward to meet and fall back
5-8These same change places
IV.A21-4Long 2nd corners forward to meet and fall back
5-8These same change places
IV.A31-42s forward to meet and fall back
5-8These same change places
V.A11-2Lines of three take hands and forward a double to meet
3-41s+3s fall back a double (individually)
5-8M1+M3, W1+W3, 2s two hand turn
V.A21-4Same pairs side
5-8Partners two hand turn
VI.A11-8Men right shoulder hey for three on the side
VI.A21-8Women right shoulder hey for three on the side
VI.A31-8Circular hey for six, 1s face, 2s+3s face neighbor
VI.A41-8Circular hey for six (again)
VI.A51-41s followed by others, cast to bottom
5-81s followed by others, cast to top
VI.A61-41s followed by others, cast to bottom (again)
5-81s followed by others, cast to top

If you find what you believe to be a mistake in this animation, please leave a comment on youtube explaining what you believe to be wrong. If I agree with you I shall do my best to fix it.

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The dance itself is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. The interpretation is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. My visualization of this dance is copyright © 2021 by George W. Williams V and is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This website is copyright © 2021,2022 by George W. Williams V
Creative Commons License My work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Most of the dances have more restrictive licensing, see my notes on copyright, the individual dance pages should mention when some rights are waived.